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Google Search Engine Core Called Hummingbird
Brett_Tabke




msg:4612987
 6:43 pm on Sep 26, 2013 (gmt 0)

Google changed its underlying search engine technology about a month ago. The new version's called Hummingbird, and the change was made to better answer the complex questions so many of us are asking Google these days. Since the switch, Hummingbird's been put to use in over ninety percent of worldwide searches and positions Google to stay on top of its game for the foreseeable future. It's the culmination of 15 years of work, but Singhal says it's just the next step in Search's evolution, so we can expect more of the same in the next 15.

[engadget.com...]


 

EditorialGuy




msg:4613626
 4:51 pm on Sep 29, 2013 (gmt 0)

One of the main points of early Google was that it was really simple. Search for something and get a clean looking page with 10-14 links. Today G has added (and keeps on adding) so much bull - it's a nightmare for the user.


There's a lot of truth in that, but Google's algorithm (by Hummingbird or any other name) and the UI are two different things. Hummingbird is independent of Universal Search, and Universal Search is independent of Hummingbird.

Refinements like Hummingbird are needed, in part, because the Web is so much bigger than it was when Google was founded in 1998. When I launched my first site about [topic] in 1996, a search for [subtopic] might have yielded fewer than a dozen English-language results. Today, the same search might yield thousands of pages. And while most of today's pages are likely to be autogenerated garbage, Google would still have a fairly large number of pages to rank even if it were able to discard the junk. How it supposed to rank them? Is Google supposed to pretend that we're still in 1998 when the Web has grown exponentially and SEOs have been gaming its algorithm for 15 years?

SevenCubed




msg:4613646
 9:12 pm on Sep 29, 2013 (gmt 0)

Ah ha.

I was sitting here wondering why google decided to compare their information processing core to a hummingbird so went and did some research into a hummingbird's nature for clues.

Found this nugget on Wikipedia:
Hummingbirds are continuously hours away from starving to death and are able to store just enough energy to survive overnight.

Therefore my next website presentation of knowledge will include this, and only this, in the robots.txt in the root folder...

User-agent: Googlebot
Disallow: /

Within a few days the beast will collapse and all the creatures of nature can reclaim their personas and dignity.

Okay wishful thinking maybe, but one must have hope.

However, I'm going to attempt promotion via Twitter. I really am going to block googlebot. They now no longer subscribe to natural laws of symbiotic relationships so they're cut-off. They'll have nobody to blame but their own gluttonous greed.

viral




msg:4613658
 10:03 pm on Sep 29, 2013 (gmt 0)

SevenCubed that is gold.

There are quite a few SEO's calling this the scrapper update. If anyone here follows Dr Pete from Moz on twitter, he showed some interesting keywords that were all knowledge graph and adwords ads above the fold. Actually most of below the fold was looking the same the organic links were nearly pushed to page 2.

This appears to be the future of Google. It is not a very bright future for us webmasters. A long time ago I diversified and went into social and it works great for me but it also has it's ups and downs. I think what we are seeing is the web finally being dominated by the big boys proper.

Whitey




msg:4613695
 3:11 am on Sep 30, 2013 (gmt 0)

he showed some interesting keywords that were all knowledge graph and adwords ads above the fold. Actually most of below the fold was looking the same the organic links were nearly pushed to page 2.

I can't comment on the veracity of those remarks and quote, but one thing I would say is search analysis on specific keywords will become progressively irrelevant.

If you build a page with brand in mind, you should know what it represents. Google has the capacity to interpret the intent of the query returned, even if the keywords don't appear on a page. Google was always about the long tail - and now this has morphed to conversational context.

Several members in other threads are highlighting the switch to brand priorities in servicing their clients. It all fits in with Panda and Penguin really IMO. Watching UI and brand engagement metrics would therefore seem more productive.

Folks who have missed it might want to watch the interview with Ben Gomes VP of search on his thoughts on the future direction : [webmasterworld.com...]

mcskoufis




msg:4613730
 8:37 am on Sep 30, 2013 (gmt 0)

Regarding the discussion about whether changes to layout or algorithmic updates are good or bad for the user, pretty sure they have tested and know what they're doing.

Now as for Hummingbird for extra long-tail queries like "how can my blue widgetry get implemented in the red widget manufacturing process" you would get maybe the first two results as relevant and the rest garbage.

I think this is now much changed and while there's still garbage, you can find more results that are helpful. IMO that is :)

I do think this is for the benefit of their users, they wouldn't have even announced it if it wasn't something that improved whatever metrics they are looking into.

I don't agree with this being an update to get more people to click on ads. That would be a very dangerous move that would risk their reputation and prompt users to switch search engines.

Dymero




msg:4613784
 1:57 pm on Sep 30, 2013 (gmt 0)

Bill Slawski had this to say in his recent post about a possible Hummingbird-related patent:

The Google Hummingbird Patent?
http://www.seobythesea.com/2013/09/google-hummingbird-patent/ [seobythesea.com]
While people seem satisfied with typing keywords into a search box, it seems that its more common for people to actually abandon their focus on just matching keywords when they perform a spoken query. Were more likely to see someone typing [chicago style pizza restaurant] into a search box, and someone speaking the query [What is the best place to find and eat Chicago deep dish style pizza?] into their phone.


He's right. Any time I've used voice search, I almost always use natural language. Hummingbird is the Google Now update. Given how strongly Google has been pushing Google Now, it makes sense that they'd make these changes to suit its usage.

[edited by: aakk9999 at 10:38 pm (utc) on Sep 30, 2013]
[edit reason] Added link to the article [/edit]

claus




msg:4613830
 7:24 pm on Sep 30, 2013 (gmt 0)

OP: > "...so we can expect more of the same in the next 15."

Let's not hope so. I'd much rather have an Internet than a Google-net.

jkm0449




msg:4613835
 7:41 pm on Sep 30, 2013 (gmt 0)

claus ... you REALLY have that right. Google is making life miserable for small businesses. But, then again, I think that is their intention in the first place. Small business has no advertising budget. Big business does - even though they screw the searchers.

EditorialGuy




msg:4613850
 9:09 pm on Sep 30, 2013 (gmt 0)

Google is making life miserable for small businesses. But, then again, I think that is their intention in the first place. Small business has no advertising budget. Big business does


If Hummingbird were something that Google's advertising-sales department cranked out while the Search Quality team went on summer vacation, wouldn't it be smarter for the organic results to favor small businesses, since the big businesses can afford to buy ads?

Martin Ice Web




msg:4613977
 12:47 pm on Oct 1, 2013 (gmt 0)

Just to add my tp.

Hummingscrappingbird is not a what a wonder of new technology. This algo just searches for some phrases in the query and just presents answers from answer.com, Wikipedia a.s.o.

I just made a test:
searching "what is a apple" " Germany: "was ist ein Apfel"
Super Hummingscrappingbird tells me it is some narrative from xyz! I was supposed to read that it is a pomaceous fruit or something like that. Other queries returned weird results too.
If I omit "ein" in the query then the bird does not fly. So no semantic just plain reaction on words/sentence!

Dymero




msg:4614054
 6:27 pm on Oct 1, 2013 (gmt 0)

Not sure about German Google, but if I type in that query, I get a definition of an Apple, followed by the Wiki page for Apple the fruit, and then Apple, Inc. stuff. Bing shows the definition first followed by Apple, Inc. stuff.

The Google one answers the query better. I did see what you mean when I visited Google.de, though. It doesn't make sense.

jimbeetle




msg:4614067
 7:19 pm on Oct 1, 2013 (gmt 0)

[rant]
Please, how many years is it going to take for folks to learn how to spell "scraper," from the root "scrape," not from "scrap," as in metal or yard?
[/rant]

SevenCubed




msg:4614071
 7:22 pm on Oct 1, 2013 (gmt 0)

...as in metal or yard?

Or also know as one who frequently emerges from bar room brawls sunny side up. "He's a real scrapper!"

TyMax




msg:4614075
 7:46 pm on Oct 1, 2013 (gmt 0)

None of the changes in the last 6 months on Google make any sense. The only thing we have done short term is slightly increase Adwords budget. But ownership is not happy with doing that for more than a month or so.

I have read here some feel this is a money grab by Google and maybe it is, but in our case it will be very short term. Ownership does not feel Google is quite the value it was 3-4 years ago or back in 1998-2005 when things were fast, smooth and relevant.

My customer's websites have been effected in several different ways. But the main site I work on is doing extremely well on the main other search engine. The one thing I have notice is on the high valued key words or phrases where we do well on one, Google seems to have those pages demoted or filtered to Google second page or worse.

All these pages use to be about the same on both. Is it possible that Google would penalize a site page for ranking high on another search engine? My only logic is that then show different results as compared to their main rival? Our site traffic is down but the quality of contacts is up.

jkm0449




msg:4614085
 8:39 pm on Oct 1, 2013 (gmt 0)

Google has no clue. I just tried a test .. "I need something to store my keys"

They came back with:

1. A story about a guy who dropped his keys down a sewer
2. How to find lost objects
3. Wireless key finder (might count as close - but no cigar)
4. Microsoft store - software downloads
5. Runnes - where do you put your keys? (looked promising .. but Nada) And then the site wouldn't let me out - which really pisses me off!
6. Amazon.com - but nothing really relevane
7. "never lose your keys again | Bluetooth tile...." - kind of neat - but not a way to store your keys
8. Combination Keys and Lost Key FAQs from Master Lock - Master ...

So .. nothing on the first page. Finally .. on the 4th page, one entry about how to hide your house key. But never an entry for key cabinets or lock boxes or key hiders or any of the other ways to store keys. And no ads, either.

Shepherd




msg:4614109
 10:53 pm on Oct 1, 2013 (gmt 0)

From Danny Sullivan's write up: [searchengineland.com...]
Panda, Penguin and other updates were changes to parts of the old algorithm, but not an entire replacement of the whole. Think of it again like an engine. Those things were as if the engine received a new oil filter or had an improved pump put in. Hummingbird is a brand new engine, though it continues to use some of the same parts of the old, like Penguin and Panda


Soooo... seems to me from reading this that those of us that were waiting/hoping for a penguin update can pretty much stop waiting and get on with our lives in search of other traffic...

SevenCubed




msg:4614123
 11:54 pm on Oct 1, 2013 (gmt 0)

Think of it again like an engine.

How does it differ from Caffeine from a while back, maybe 2 years ago?

Shepherd




msg:4614125
 12:15 am on Oct 2, 2013 (gmt 0)

"I need something to store my keys"


Funny, first thing I thought of was a flash drive or something similar to store my software keys.

Search... if it was easy everyone would do it.

Jez123




msg:4614183
 7:59 am on Oct 2, 2013 (gmt 0)


Soooo... seems to me from reading this that those of us that were waiting/hoping for a penguin update can pretty much stop waiting and get on with our lives in search of other traffic...


Do you think Penguin has been removed / replaced by another part of Hummingbird and that there will be no more "refreshes" or updates of that part of the Algo? I hope that's not the case. If that's the case, surely the same must be said of Panda?

Martin Ice Web




msg:4614189
 8:20 am on Oct 2, 2013 (gmt 0)

[antirant]

@jimbeetle, i am sorry but every time i push the pp on my keyboard, like in scrapper, it puts to pps pps in a row. I am sorry that i made u sad and that u lost any hope in folks to learn how to write it in the right way.
I make u a proposal as i cant write a pp without getting two pps i will now write:

scrabers. ;)

[/antirant]

Shepherd




msg:4614199
 9:33 am on Oct 2, 2013 (gmt 0)

Do you think Penguin has been removed / replaced by another part of Hummingbird


Sounds like they included penguin/panda on the hummingbird. My first thought was that it would have been a good time to update those if they had an update/refresh available but then the more I thought about it the more it came to mind that they would not have wanted to change/update/refresh any of the add-on (penguin/panda) so they could get a clear picture of what the hummingbird was doing compared to the old engine.

tigger




msg:4614209
 10:22 am on Oct 2, 2013 (gmt 0)

looking at the serps and some of the spam thats ranking clearly Hummingbird hasn't stopped singing yet ! I'm seeing a real mess in the UK with old spammy / doorway sites ranking that had been dropped before and have returned - this has not stopped and a refresh will soon hit

TyMax




msg:4614469
 2:41 pm on Oct 3, 2013 (gmt 0)

I could understand making a change that would filter out duplication and improve search results. But so far the end result is big box website listing usurping dedicated product sites. Also other product sites sun directories rank higher than long standing higher ranking and relevant websites.

My problem is we still have fair ranking on some products in the serps on Google but other main products are dropping in the serps. Where as these same pages are doing extremely well else where and still driving quality traffic from other sources.

If I make major changes to make Google happy I risk losing standings and traffic from say Bing. The main site has been around since 1996 and has always been very relevant and tried to use all the white hat approach to ranking. All was fine till this major change. I also see other older well established sites losing ground same as our site.

The new changes are not able to properly index a product website that has like type listings of products and treats them as duplication. When in fact they are not the same. At this point I am on hold and watching Google to see if they correct their problem. Which now is my problem.

EditorialGuy




msg:4614477
 3:06 pm on Oct 3, 2013 (gmt 0)

Sounds like they included penguin/panda on the hummingbird. My first thought was that it would have been a good time to update those if they had an update/refresh available but then the more I thought about it the more it came to mind that they would not have wanted to change/update/refresh any of the add-on (penguin/panda) so they could get a clear picture of what the hummingbird was doing compared to the old engine.


Great point.

Re Panda: A while back, Google said that Panda has now been integrated into the main algorithm. Might that explain why some people say they've been hit by updates while others say "nothing new here"? Instead of being like the monthly Google updates of old, Panda may now be like the Angel of Death, making the rounds and knocking on different doors from day to day or week to week.

SevenCubed




msg:4614519
 5:50 pm on Oct 3, 2013 (gmt 0)

How does it differ from Caffeine from a while back, maybe 2 years ago?

Ha, I'm going to have a conversation with my Self to offer my self potential insight.

Going back to Caffeine, wasn't that all about producing better results? Have we seen such better results in the last couple years?

Then what is Hummingbird except a core that is sucking back more Caffeine and loosing its optimal pH balance of 7 and therefore regurgitating acidic results?

Ultimately if the creature doesn't starve itself to death it'll eat itself alive! Sit back and enjoy the show.

jimbeetle




msg:4614557
 10:29 pm on Oct 3, 2013 (gmt 0)

Going back to Caffeine, wasn't that all about producing better results?

Somewhat, but the emphasis of Caffeince was an infrastructure change that improved Google's indexing of the web and returning results.

Matt Cutts take [mattcutts.com]:

This update is primarily under the hood: were rewriting the foundation of some of our infrastructure. But some of the search results do change...

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